Duncan Bucknell


Guest post by Robert Cantrell R&D planning is a misnomer given the truth that no plan survives first contact with adversity.  R&D involved experimentation, which essentially means to try something and see what happens because you don’t already know for sure.  So really you do not plan R&D much beyond setting a budget and a commercial direction on which to orient some of that experimentation.  To illustrate, one of 3Ms commercial directions… Read More

Guest post by Robert Cantrell The introduction of IP to any given product solution should have, as a reason, to make the product solution somehow more saleable than it would be without the IP.  This means that the product solution should be somehow better, faster, or less expensive than the product solution would be without the IP, or, in the case of a brand, that the product solution will have an emotional… Read More

Having focused on the meaning and creation of learning organizations for a period in my life I can’t help coming back from time to time to thinking about organizations as living organisms. The metaphor actually makes quite a bit of sense…like an organism (human for example) each organization is made up of different composing parts with distinct functions all working together to reach specific common goals. If the function of one organ… Read More

In my IP strategy courses, I describe ten angles of competition, the sixth of which I define as a potential customer providing a solution to a need himself.  For example, a house painter competes with more than other house painters when he proposes to paint a house.  He also competes with the capacity and willingness of a home owner to just pick up his own brush and paint that house.  External IP… Read More

Sometimes patents can provide little or no value for a business. They wind up being merely a cost burden. Can organisations avoid generating unwanted IP? For the most part, yes. Of course this entails knowing the common underlying causes and acting to address them. It may require more time and attention than has previously been allocated within your business but the advantages are so far reaching that it’s worth the investment. There… Read More

Can you really have a cohesive IP Strategy at the corporate level? I don’t think so. Unless of course they are one and the same thing.  (Small companies with effectively one business unit obviously have the same IP Strategy for both.) Otherwise, each business unit needs its own defined IP Strategy – focused on the strategy and its execution required to meet its specific goals.  As soon as you start building a… Read More

A common cause of friction in any operation is to have individuals or teams designated to support a business strategy run separate strategies for their own self-interest that do not align.  For example, a licensing department may wish to license IP to reach its financial targets in a technical area where the organization has decided exclusivity better supports the business overall.  Given the nature of IP to be treated as distinct from… Read More

On a day in 1970, a well-known comic strip called Pogo had environmental protection as its subject for the day.  Upon seeing the environment littered with trash, the character Pogo stated, “We have met the enemy, and he is us.”  This statement yields a universal truth quoted by strategy practitioners in many fields that certainly applies to IP strategy as well.  The greatest source of friction that prevents most organizations from achieving… Read More

How would you react if you were forced into a commoditised positioning? Check out these car rental companies and what happens to them at airports around the world for just a taste. So how to react? From a business standpoint, if ‘Thrifty’ really means ‘we are the cheapest’ – then make your signage black and white and put up a brightly coloured sign saying ‘We will beat any price from these guys… Read More

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